Amid the extreme poverty of Rio de Janeiro's Whale Back slum, Helio Cara has a terrible accident which leaves his face scarred beyond recognition. Lacking a face, he lacks identity. Based on a real incident, Cecile Pineda's stunning novel observes Cara as he struggles with a cruelly insensitive medical system until he decides to surgically create a new face himself -- and a new identity. Book jacket.
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Set in Rio de Janeiro, Pineda's 1985 novel ponders the question: If we don't have a face, do we have an identity? That conundrum is the horrible reality faced by Helio Cara, whose facial features are ... Read full review
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alley already basket Big Irma boss breath bucket Cardoso carefully catches chair clatter color corner counter courtyard curtain dark desk door doorway dresser dust edge empty eyes face fedora feels Fifty cruzeiros finger footfalls give glass glow Godoy grasses hair hand handker handkerchief head hear Helio Cara inside jaws wired shut Juliao laughs lets lidocaine lifts light listen look Lula Mario mask metal mirror morning mouth moves needle night Novocain once orchard outer limits perhaps Piracicaba plastic pocket polenta procaine pulls rain reaches remembers Rio das Pedras running Senhor shack shirt shut side silence sits skin sleep slides slip smell someone sound stairs stands stare street suitcase tar paper thread throbs trees turns voice votive candle waiting wall watches Whale Back wind window woman